How often should you update your social media profiles?  I just did a walk through our offices and reminded all the employees that they need to go to LinkedIn and update their profiles.  Several looked at me blankly, one even said to me, “Am I supposed to have a profile?”  I nodded patiently and said in my normal, playfully acerbic tone, “Yes, you need to have a LinkedIn profile.”  She looked at the others around the room as if I had chopped her head off.


It is easy for me to forget that not everyone has had a profile for five years.  Not everyone thinks regular updates and profile maintenance are necessary.  I do and my co-workers know that I do.  In a busy, growing company, LinkedIn and other professional networks have served as a great help in my efforts to recruit for or promote my company and understand everyone’s position and how I can help them, how they can help me.


LinkedIn is the ultimate professional networking tool, even with its constant updates and changes.  I also have a profile on Plaxo – which I like to describe as a cross-breed of Facebook and LinkedIn with some pretty cool tools built in – like their birthday calendar.  I love sending eCards to professional connections; it is a great way to let someone know you are thinking of them and another way to maintain inactive or passive relationships.  You never know when an inactive relationship will blossom into a full-blown active one. 


And there are other online networking profiles floating around out there.  My personal social media philosophy has always been:  There are an awful lot of details available about you on the internet- take control of your online persona and have what YOU control be the dominating sources, the highest ranked listings in a Google search about you.  I cannot stress enough the importance of knowing what is out there about you.  Go to, type your name into the search bar and see what comes up about you.  The listings of personal information are all available on line.  Next go to Google and type in your name in the search bar, but search in "images."  Other surprises await you.  Information you put out about yourself online is all cached somewhere and is retrievable. 


Be careful and be in control. 


Anyone who knows me, knows that I have always been a huge proponent of having an open Facebook.  I use it for business and professional networking, so I want people to be able to find me and feel free to contact me.  But I also like feeling secure and until recently, I have always felt secure online.  That was no longer true after a few harassing emails and messages through Facebook and other networks.  I changed my privacy settings on Facebook and now avidly block followers on Twitter.  I have also closed my Facebook chat function.   Why?  Because I want to continue to use social media in my work and just like any other tool, there are evolving rules regarding its use. 


I choose to evolve with the rules. 


by rayannethorn

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Jerry, I don't mind at all. It doesn't. Does it have to?

There is an interesting parallel conversation worth tuning in to - who owns your LinkedIn profile[]? I think the consensus is that it belongs entirely to the individual. In that case an employer has no business telling an employee what to do with their personal web space. Of course, employees would be well advised to realize that with ownership comes responsibilities and consequences.

As to the semantics of resume vs. profile, the issue is moot. Upward of 87% of "profiles" have Interested in career opportunities checked off which makes them, in effect, resumes.

Believe it or not there are a lot of companies who monitor employees internet usage.  If they pull up monster on a company computer during the workday and they are not in HR it flags.  If they are looking at monster or career builder other employment sites during work hours over a period of time they are asked about it.


I am not sure that first ammedment rights have anything to do with what employees can access during work hours on the internet.  I know for sure that if they are going to porn sites, dating sites or spend way too much time reading sports scores or the local paper they are notified of too much company time spent on the net.


Most people have enough sense not to go on job sites and all the others on company computers because they are told that internet usage is monitored. 


I am getting links from people who instead of sending a resume ask us to go their linkedin profile which has the exact same info as their resume when i make them send me a word copy.


What Paul and i are talking about is the profile that has the name, location , title and no detail for all their jobs, contacts are hidden so all you know is a name, where they work and what they say they are but when contacted they are in fact not a fit because the job title is misleading due to all the strange titles people are using.


I think if somebody is sitting at their desk at work reading the classified ads it might cause some questions from their boss.  Or maybe not.  She might help him circle them.  :)

Rayanne said:

My request was not to update a resume - as in "become a job seeker" - my point was, like I said, to give a potential or current client a point of reference when they are speaking with one of our employees.  


I include my LinkedIn profile everywhere - at the end of every email, at the end of every blog.  And I am NOT looking for a job. 


@Sandra - the HR Manager you just referenced is missing the boat and is still living in 2005.   


The bottom line is that if your employees are happy and treated well, they won't be looking for another job.  If employees are looking or accepting employment elsewhere, it gives the employer an opportunity to fix something that is obviously broken.


I guess we should start monitoring all online activity all the time, that way we can shut down the internet for anyone that pulls up - then we should take away their right to cruise the classified ads in a newspaper too.  


All of a sudden, this feels like a first amendment issue.  

@Sandra ... What folks don't realize is that if we define these profiles  as resumes on LinkedIn - Then a VP of Hr could easily say to their employees Please don't post your profile on LinkedIn as we could easily assume you are on the market ... 


This is the argument I am trying to present Profiles are Profiles until you engage the profile owner and determine he/she is 1) Even a fit 2) Provides you his/her real resume - which will be a much more accurate description of background experience and qualification that what the profile shows.


My resume is 6 pages long last time I checked -  why would I post all of that stuff on my Linkedin Profile ... My resume is Private to me and  only to an Employer if I "Allow it" to be and only then  will they  really know my indepth background and that is the point I am trying to make to Jerry.


If Linkedin is a resume database I see no reason why a VP of HR from a Fortune 500 Company can't say please hide or disable your profile ...  Or risk being walked out the door...  When that happens LinkedIn's real purpose will be redefined ...


Love to hear more thoughts on this ...

It doesn't really matter what we call them.  It's what the company perceives them to be.  Most HR people who go on linkedin, look up an employee profile that has their work experience, dates of employment, educational background and indicates that they are intersted in career opportunities are pretty sure that they are looking at a resume of someone who is interested in being contacted about jobs.  Which is exactly why many companies are telling people if they want a linked in profile fine but no detail about the company or what they do and the career opportunities box better not be checked.  they do not see the difference between the same information posted on Linkedin and it being posted on Monster or the ladders or anyplace else.


I know when i see a skimpy profile that it is not a resume and when i see one that is a resume it looks like a resume.  So as Ami says it is what you want it to be.  To Jerry and to me it is a resume database.  To a lot of companies it is a resume database and they are saying, take it down or modify it if you want to work here.


I have not heard of anyone being walked out the door due to a profile on Linkedin but i have heard of a lot of people who were talked to about one being out there and took it down or modified it so the info would not be much different than what would show up if one did a google search of their name and location.


Maybe we should say, :"When is a resume not a resume?"  Answer:  "When it's posted on Linkedin."  A bathroom is technially a room in which one takes a bath but other things take place there also. 

Hi Rayanne Thorn, I agree with your points about Linkedin and keeping profiles up to date. I've read some of the comments not seeing the value of doing this. Well, every time you made an update, people in your network get notified - meaning the more you update, the more other people get to know you.
Thanks for the tip about Obviously I had to try for myself and to my surprise found a link from Google Group from 1997! The funny thing is that I do not recall writing it, however I do recognize the content and I feel it gives me some "early-adopters-credit" ;-)

Could you elaborate a bit about blocking followers on Twitter? I am sometimes wondering why certain "people" want to follow my Twitter account but I have left it to them to decide.

Wanted to rate your posting with 5 stars, for some reasons I don't think I succeeded.
Best regards
Marianne Steen, Denmark.

I think people need to be aware of their presence online. For personal use, I don't use my full name but when networking, I do use my full name. This has prevented the issue of my name coming up in searches when I don't want it to.

I use LinkedIn to recruit and I have run into many people who aren't looking for a job. How I recruit is by networking and that is why I use LinkedIn. It's the most effective way to network with business people all over the country. Someone on LinkedIn is a person that understands the importance of networking. It isn't just to find a job.

Creating LinkedIn profile: 30-45 minutes

Updating LinkedIn profile if you already have one: 10-20 minutes

Throwing fellow employee's under a bus on a website because they don't feel LinkedIn is a necessary a part of their job as you do?: Priceless

"I just did a walk through our offices and reminded all the employees that they need to go to LinkedIn and update their profiles. Several looked at me blankly, one even said to me, “Am I supposed to have a profile?”  I nodded patiently and said in my normal, playfully acerbic tone, “Yes, you need to have a LinkedIn profile."


In the words of Keyshawn Johnson from NFL Primetime: "Come on, Man?!?"



In the words of Larry the Cable Guy "I don't care who you are, that's pretty funny right there, now."

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